Reading a book with 200 million people looking over your shoulder

KinTweet - one step too far in Social Media encroachment (Photo: KinTweet)The web 2.0 world is full of mix and match.

Using Facebook? With one click you can share your Facebook updates on Twitter.

Liking The RITE Series blog? At the bottom of any page you can click to share each story on Facebook, Twitter or Google+.

Feeling good about being in your favourite shop or cafe or bar? One click on your mobile phone can allow you to ‘check in’ to that business on foursquare, which in turn can tweet your check in and comments over Twitter, which in turn is captured by Google and presented in search results should someone be searching for your or a bar/cafe/shop perhaps from their phone upon which they had just checked in elsewhere using Facebook Places.

This is all part of living a social life these days and many businesses would love to thank you for sharing your love with them.

But, one service has just taken things too far in my opinion: KinTweet.

Shhhhh, I’m reading

KinTweet is a new service that provides a light Twitter application you can run on your Kindle.

For those of you unaware of Kindles, they are Amazon’s little electronic book gadget that allows you to download books and read them off a screen that features a special display known as e-ink (it behaves quite similarly to paper, that is, you can read your Kindle in full sunlight unlike iPads and laptops which become unreadable in the glare).

But this is not an advertisement for Kindles.

This is a small tirade in defence of the last place on this planet where we should be able to turn off the world for a moment: the humble novel.

When I turn on my Kindle (or pick up a novel or textbook), the last thing I want is social chatter in my ear or before my eyes.

I will not be loading KinTweet on my Kindle because I am sure it will interrupt my solitary moment of reading to notify me that Bronwyn Clee has made a new friend, Darwin Life has a story on a new, trendy apartment, Bob Gosford is berating some hapless Alice Springs official, Darwin Airport has decreed better espresso standards, kishan has another thought-provoking utterance or that Amanda467 is living in bliss in the outback.

These tweets are generally welcome at any other time but not while reading a book.

To me, KinTweet is about as welcome as a webcam in a toilet for making hands-free Skype calls.

If you are using it, I would love to know why and how.

Are there any other invasions of social media or social networks that you believe have gone too far? Leave some comments below.

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